Public water supply in Limerick village no longer 'at risk' following works

Donal O'Regan

Reporter:

Donal O'Regan

Email:

donal.oregan@limerickleader.ie

Public water supply in Limerick village no longer 'at risk' following works

Workers from Irish Water pictured in Hospital during the upgrade works

OVER1,000 water consumers in County Limerick have received good news following the removal of the Hospital public water supply from the EPA’s Remedial Action List (RAL).

This follows extensive work by Irish Water to develop a new water source to supply the town and an upgrade of the treatment plant.

As a result of this work, the Hospital water supply now has treatment in place to protect against contamination from cryptosporidium.

The new source also ensures that local residents and businesses will have a more secure water supply with a greatly reduced risk of unplanned outages in the future.

Ian O’Mahony, Irish Water’s operations lead for Limerick, said: “The EPA’s Remedial Action List, or RAL, is the list of ‘at risk’ water supplies. The Hospital supply was on the RAL due to inadequate protection against cryptosporidium.

“Severe issues also emerged during the recent summer drought with the volume of water that could be produced from the existing groundwater source. This resulted in water restrictions being imposed in the area over a period of time.”

To address these two issues, they developed a new borehole source and upgraded the disinfection system at the Hospital treatment plant.

“This has removed the cryptosporidium risk and resulted in a much more secure and reliable supply for our customers in the area.

“The water supply in Hospital is now fully compliant with the requirements set out in the European Union Drinking Water Directive and national drinking water regulations,” said Mr O’Mahony.

Separately, over €450,000 was invested to tackle leakage and remove old lead pipes from the water supply network in Hospital during 2018 as part of Irish Water’s Leakage Reduction Programme.

As a result of this they believe that all public side lead pipes and back yard service lead pipes (pipes connecting premises to the water mains) have now been replaced in the town. This also brings significant health benefits for local customers.

Irish Water is continuing its work to remove the three remaining supplies in County Limerick from the Remedial Action List. 

In Croom, new borehole sources are being investigated to provide a more secure supply and remove the risk of cryptosporidium.

In Abbeyfeale and Newcastle West, potential issues have been identified in relation to pesticide exceedances. We are working with a range of other agencies and landowners to raise awareness of the safe use of pesticides and herbicides and better protect these sources.